Prey

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Plot, Plan, Fail, Repeat

"Are you two crazy?" Aric asked, unable to believe what he was hearing. "You want to kill the king?

"Our father?" he reminded Emily, glaring at her in the mirror.

"Look," his sister said hotly, "he may have been present at our conception, but he has never been our father."

"That may be," Aric replied just as hotly, "but that doesn't mean we need to kill him."

"No," she agreed, "not just that, but for everything else he's done to us for the last century and a half... for that we do!"

"Fuck," Aric said, swerving to get his car back on the road, nearly loosing control as he drove through the winding mountain pass. "I agree, he's an asshole, a terrible father, and an even worse ruler, but kill him?"

"Okay," Emily sighed angrily, knowing she had to play her trump card. "If not for what he did to us, how about what he did to mom?"

"Did to mom?" Aric asked, confusion showing on his face. "What did he do to mom?"

"Do you really believe that one day she just decided to abdicate her power and retire to a place of solitude?" she asked, amazed that her brother was so blind.

"She wrote me a letter explaining why," he said hotly, feeling like he was about to have the rug pulled out from under him.

"Yeah right," she laughed mirthlessly. "Dad forced her out because she was interfering in his fun.

"Mom knew dad was loosing it, and he made sure she was silenced before she could gather followers and push him out,"Emily explained to her hard headed brother. "Don't you remember how it was before she left.

"Yeah, dad was a dick, but he wasn't a sadistic dick."

"So mom's not at her retreat in Redmond?" Aric asked.

"She's in Redmond alright," Emily agreed, "but it is no retreat. Dad has turned that house into a prison."

"So," Henry said, finally adding his voice to the conversation, "we need to add your mom to our list of people to rescue."

"You bet your sweet ass," Emily replied happily, digging into her bag.

"First rounds on me," she called handing out blood bags.

Aric shook his head, his mind racing. If what his sister said was true, their mother had spent the last fifty years lock up, alone, kept from her children and her people.

No wonder her letters had seemed terse and emotionless. More than likely, his father had made sure that any communication she did have was cleansed before it was allowed out.

"How did you find out about mom?" he asked.

"Her letters," Emily said, finishing her drink.

"What about her letters?" Henry asked over his shoulder.

"There was a code," she sighed, digging out a worn looking notebook. "It took a while to piece it together. Dad has all of her letters sanitized before he lets them be sent out."

"What did the code say?" Aric asked, turning his car towards Redmond.

"Help me, he's gone mad," Emily said, her eyes tearing up.

"How long have you known?"Aric asked, beginning to get angry.

"I figured it out last week," his sister said, swallowing hard.

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